Councillor Josh Morgan’s push to appoint new city managers in London by by-law has been put on hold.
The Corporate Services Committee went in camera for two and a half hours Tuesday to discuss Morgan’s motion to maintain city council’s control over the hiring of senior city hall staff.
City Manager Art Zuidema said two weeks ago creating by-laws for the hiring of senior bureaucrats may not be necessary, a view that Morgan doesn’t agree with.
Morgan’s motion would both specify that the city engineer, Kelly Scherr, be appointed through a by-law at the next council meeting and that current bylaws be amended to make sure that bylaws are required to appoint members of the leadership team. Morgan argues that this would allow council to have a direct relationship with those hired to city leadership positions.
The Ward 7 Councillor cited the close working relationship between senior staff and council as the reason why they should report to both the city manager and council.
Mayor Matt Brown made a rare appearance at the committee and was the one who suggested the debate be taken behind closed doors. Ironically, Brown’s suggestion came right after the committee discussed cutting back on the amount of time they spend in closed door sessions.
The matter was ultimately referred to the next Corporate Services Committee meeting after it was learned the current by-law Morgan used for his motion, which is on the city website, may not be up to date.